WTF HBO can't film in 4k or UHD?

edited April 2019 in General
Is it just me or is nothing on HBO in 4k or UHD? (I assume those two are the same?) I bought a 65inch 4k TV and after watching tons of nature shows on Netflix that look better than real life, I've become spoiled. 1080p looks like something I drew with dull crayons.  
CapeGabe
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Comments

  • Doctor_NickDoctor_Nick Terminus
    edited April 2019
    It says they shot on an Arri Alexa, which wasn't a 4K digital camera.  I suppose they could interpolate if the demand was there.  
    EsotericEriccdrive
  • MrXMrX CO
    edited April 2019
    Apparently HBO streams look the best through Amazon (ie if you subscribe to HBO as a channel on Amazon). Not going to get you 4K but I've read on Reddit that Amazon streams at a higher bitrate. I just use HBO Now because we split the account with a couple people but I'd like to to test it sometime. Amazon originals generally do have pretty high picture quality.
    EsotericEric
  • I do actually watch it through Amazon. Being a crayon drawing was hopefully an obvious exaggeration, it still is quite good looking but it definitely doesn't look as sharp as some shows and programs.  
    MrX
  • Teresa from ConcordTeresa from Concord Concord, California
    I’m just hoping the remaining episodes only happen in daytime. 
    hisdudeness915gjames80
  • edited April 2019
    I feel your pain. The first time I watched it was through the cable provider and the first 30 min was like WTF is going on!? I was especially pissed because I purchased an LG OLED a few months ago so I could be blown away by experiences like this. 

    However, I just finished watching it again for the second time with slightly different settings and it was amazingly better. First, I streamed it through HBO GO and second and more importantly, I switched my TV setting to expert dark room. Now the blacks were actually blacks and I could actually see what the heck was going on. 

    This made the episode thoroughly more enjoyable. Can't wait to watch it a 3rd time!!
  • AaronAaron Newton, MA
    There’s a good article up at TechCrunch about how the artistic choices made for the episode were basically a perfect storm for streaming- it would not have helped if they streamed it in 4K. There just isn’t enough bandwidth, on either side, to overcome the extremely skewed color palette. This applies to cable as well, which deals with similar compression issues. We will just have to wait for the Blu-Ray.
    https://apple.news/AZLRPjaajRrCrw44WIpGqng
  • Improved Viewing for 8.3
    If you have a modern TV with advanced settings, here is what you need to do to re watch this episode and see so much more content than with standard setting:
    1. Dynamic Picture Mode
    2. HDR or HDR + Mode
    3. Increase contrast to 100 percent
    4. Increase brightness by 3 to 5 clicks depending on your brand.  I have a Samsung 8 series
    5. Watch with lights out.

    Your results may vary depending on the brand.  Just experiment with the show on still and get your best settings.

    By doing this, there is so much more to see in the sky with the dragons and on the ground with the battle.  Improves the indoor shots greatly.

    Try it out and let me know.
  • Tiger said:
    Improved Viewing for 8.3
    If you have a modern TV with advanced settings, here is what you need to do to re watch this episode and see so much more content than with standard setting:
    1. Dynamic Picture Mode
    2. HDR or HDR + Mode
    3. Increase contrast to 100 percent
    4. Increase brightness by 3 to 5 clicks depending on your brand.  I have a Samsung 8 series
    5. Watch with lights out.

    Your results may vary depending on the brand.  Just experiment with the show on still and get your best settings.

    By doing this, there is so much more to see in the sky with the dragons and on the ground with the battle.  Improves the indoor shots greatly.

    Try it out and let me know.

    If the stream doesn't have HDR then does turning it on matter?
  • AaronAaron Newton, MA
    MrX said:
    Tiger said:
    Improved Viewing for 8.3
    If you have a modern TV with advanced settings, here is what you need to do to re watch this episode and see so much more content than with standard setting:
    1. Dynamic Picture Mode
    2. HDR or HDR + Mode
    3. Increase contrast to 100 percent
    4. Increase brightness by 3 to 5 clicks depending on your brand.  I have a Samsung 8 series
    5. Watch with lights out.

    Your results may vary depending on the brand.  Just experiment with the show on still and get your best settings.

    By doing this, there is so much more to see in the sky with the dragons and on the ground with the battle.  Improves the indoor shots greatly.

    Try it out and let me know.

    If the stream doesn't have HDR then does turning it on matter?
    Ironically, the TechCrunch article says to ignore HDR, and turn off anything with a name like Dynamic Motion.  If it works for you, then I guess it works. But number 5 is probably most of the solution.
  • You shouldn't have to adjust your TV to extreme settings to watch a show.

    Whoever they had digitally darken the show should be fired.

    Whoever OKed the final product should be fired.

    I've seen darkness done well but this episode was too dark. The only way I had the slightest idea what was going on was by reading subtitles.
    hisdudeness915Deegjames80
  • R.R. San Jose
    Does anyone know if Directv is the best way to watch it or is streaming actually superior?
  • edited April 2019
    Looked great on my LG OLED. I think streaming during non-peak hours (basically any time other than the premiere hour) is the way to go until the blu rays come out. 
    rkcrawf
  • Looked great on my LG OLED. I think streaming during non-peak hours (basically any time other than the premiere hour) is the way to go until the blu rays come out. 
    Agree. Have a 2015 4K Sony with 4K Apple TV. HBO Go was okay on 1st viewing, but I had my Hue setup in night light mode with some other ambient lighting. Watched last night with all lights off...there were a few scenes that where black looked grey. But most of the battle was clear (given the storm).  

    One awful stand out is Jorah returning from the initial charge...can’t clearly make out his expression, his eyes, whether he’s dead, etc. 
  • I have an old ass flatscreen that cost $700 about 10 years ago but would probably cost about $59 at Walmart today, if they even still make them! 

    My bigger issue is why I have to watch it at 6 PM when it's still sunny out! Luckily the previous owner of our home invested in some custom room-darkening shades, so we are all good. As soon as I closed the shades, I could watch the episode with no problem. I got why it was dark. It was a battle that took place at night and there was a big snowstorm. It didn't bother me. 
  • Anyone know if people are working on "recommended settings" being coded into the stream and read by the endpoint television? You could blanket deny, blanket accept, or do case by case with a button.

    If not..... brb going to the patent office.
    Doctor_Nick
  • I think people commonly run their televisions with settings that are way out of whack. Never mind actually calibrating them. 
  • I watched Thrones S8E3 for a 3rd time last night, and really dug into the advanced settings...I was able to improve the picture a fair amount. Good example...the initial charge of the dead looked like a black/grey wave coming at the camera. Once I tuned my black levels (had to turn them down some, gamma setting, and turned off some of the smoothing) I was able to see the individual zombies in the horde. 

    I would prefer not to have to do this, though. And, FWIW, I have had issues with Netflix and Apple TV 4K. Was watching Umbrella Academy, and everything looked muted. I had to tweak the HDR settings to get it correctly. I wonder if tweaking it for one service will break something else. 


  • I did a rewatch last night, tweaked settings a bit too - turned up contrast and gamma. I have a newish Sony set with good local dimming - so having that turned up to high is key. I keep mine in cinema/movie mode which reproduces more realistic colors - I saw some folks saying they used vivid mode which would brighten things up, but to me I hate the colors it produces - way over-saturated - when watching football for example it makes the grass look neon green). I also always have kept motion smoothing off, and keep stuff like "dynamic contrast" and other auto black level stuff off or low - it's supposed to help but I find it causes more artifacting.

    Also I think the stream was definitely higher quality as I did notice less artifacting.

    Overall - I thought it looked fantastic. The smoky battle scenes and cloudy dragon scenes all were as clear as I think they intended and easy to follow. Stuff like Brienne and Jamie fighting back to back was really really good.

    Lastly, I was watching alone so used my good headphones - the sound design and music was incredible!
    rkcrawf
  • MrX said:
    I did a rewatch last night, tweaked settings a bit too - turned up contrast and gamma. I have a newish Sony set with good local dimming - so having that turned up to high is key. I keep mine in cinema/movie mode which reproduces more realistic colors - I saw some folks saying they used vivid mode which would brighten things up, but to me I hate the colors it produces - way over-saturated - when watching football for example it makes the grass look neon green). I also always have kept motion smoothing off, and keep stuff like "dynamic contrast" and other auto black level stuff off or low - it's supposed to help but I find it causes more artifacting.

    Also I think the stream was definitely higher quality as I did notice less artifacting.

    Overall - I thought it looked fantastic. The smoky battle scenes and cloudy dragon scenes all were as clear as I think they intended and easy to follow. Stuff like Brienne and Jamie fighting back to back was really really good.

    Lastly, I was watching alone so used my good headphones - the sound design and music was incredible!
    @MrX What are you using to stream?
  • MrXMrX CO
    edited May 2019
    rkcrawf said:
    MrX said:
    I did a rewatch last night, tweaked settings a bit too - turned up contrast and gamma. I have a newish Sony set with good local dimming - so having that turned up to high is key. I keep mine in cinema/movie mode which reproduces more realistic colors - I saw some folks saying they used vivid mode which would brighten things up, but to me I hate the colors it produces - way over-saturated - when watching football for example it makes the grass look neon green). I also always have kept motion smoothing off, and keep stuff like "dynamic contrast" and other auto black level stuff off or low - it's supposed to help but I find it causes more artifacting.

    Also I think the stream was definitely higher quality as I did notice less artifacting.

    Overall - I thought it looked fantastic. The smoky battle scenes and cloudy dragon scenes all were as clear as I think they intended and easy to follow. Stuff like Brienne and Jamie fighting back to back was really really good.

    Lastly, I was watching alone so used my good headphones - the sound design and music was incredible!
    @MrX What are you using to stream?
    HBO Now via Android TV (my TV's built in OS)
  • MrX said:
    rkcrawf said:
    MrX said:
    I did a rewatch last night, tweaked settings a bit too - turned up contrast and gamma. I have a newish Sony set with good local dimming - so having that turned up to high is key. I keep mine in cinema/movie mode which reproduces more realistic colors - I saw some folks saying they used vivid mode which would brighten things up, but to me I hate the colors it produces - way over-saturated - when watching football for example it makes the grass look neon green). I also always have kept motion smoothing off, and keep stuff like "dynamic contrast" and other auto black level stuff off or low - it's supposed to help but I find it causes more artifacting.

    Also I think the stream was definitely higher quality as I did notice less artifacting.

    Overall - I thought it looked fantastic. The smoky battle scenes and cloudy dragon scenes all were as clear as I think they intended and easy to follow. Stuff like Brienne and Jamie fighting back to back was really really good.

    Lastly, I was watching alone so used my good headphones - the sound design and music was incredible!
    @MrX What are you using to stream?
    HBO Now via Android TV (my TV's built in OS)
    Surprisingly it actually looks better on my TV going through HBO on demand through Comcast/Xfinity over streaming through HBO GO on my Xbox One.  I'm not sure if my Xbox One is adding in some kind of attempted upscaling because it is 4k capable but the extra artifacts were absolutely horrible.  I used to install home theater systems and I've had my TV professionally calibrated and my calibrated settings looked downright amazing rewatching it through HBO on demand.  I'm debating buying a Roku just to see if it has better streaming with HBO GO because I've heard everybody say they have better quality through that over cable but I don't have the same experience streaming it through my Xbox One. 

    I'll be interested to see if they end up releasing a 4k version of season 8.  As of now HBO only has season 1 available on 4k Blu Ray and it's post converted from 2k to 4k from my understanding.  I know both seasons of Westworld look amazing on 4k and I'd love to get my hands on a complete Game of Thrones series in 4k although my bank account would hate me for having bought it all twice. 
  • Teresa from ConcordTeresa from Concord Concord, California
    Any chance they’ll redo the editing, coloring, smokey-ing,etc. and re-release the episode so we can view it without tweaking and tuning? 
  • I found out when I got my 4K TV a few years ago (a mistake I wish I didn't make) that cable is the absolute worst, streaming Netflix was much better and streaming Amazon seemed the clearest. No one told me 4K TV would be so bad at showing lower resolution which is 85% of what most people watch.
  • Tried a 10 yr old Samsung plasma. Looked pretty good (only watched 2nd half of Thrones). Streamed via Roku
  • edited May 2019
    Looks like there will be a 4k version of the Blu Rays released come the time of release. 

    https://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/HBO/Disc_Announcements/game-of-thrones-season-eight-4k-ultra-hd-bluray-bluray-preorders-live/43957
  • Garthgou81Garthgou81 Placerville, CA
    I wonder if we will get a 4K complete series set. They have the first season and will be doing the 8th. They’d be crazy not to. 
  • A_Ron_HubbardA_Ron_Hubbard Cincinnati, OH
    I'm here after buying a 4K TV for the first time to let you all know 1) this thread is like the fifth Google result in the whole internet for "why doesn't HBO stream in 4k" and 2) I am OUTRAGED.
    ken haleCapeGabecalebthrower
  • Welcome to the party, bar is stocked 
  • MrXMrX CO
    edited March 10
    I'm here after buying a 4K TV for the first time to let you all know 1) this thread is like the fifth Google result in the whole internet for "why doesn't HBO stream in 4k" and 2) I am OUTRAGED.

    At least The Expanse on Amazon in 4K HDR looks incredible! You'll have to do another rewatch now that you have a new TV  ;)

    What tv did you end up getting?
  • edited March 10
    I'm here after buying a 4K TV for the first time to let you all know 1) this thread is like the fifth Google result in the whole internet for "why doesn't HBO stream in 4k" and 2) I am OUTRAGED.
    Most streaming services' original content is in 4k and HDR otherwise 4k blu rays have the highest quality 4k/HDR content.  Don't hesitate to reach out with any questions...  My big tip if you're planning on buying 4k Blu Ray disks is wait for Target to have another buy 2 get 1 free.  And ditto what @MrX said about The Expanse.  Also I know it's a touchy subject with some but The Long Night (Battle at Winterfell) and The Bells (destruction of Kings Landing) from Game of Thrones looks amazing in 4k/HDR on a good TV.  
    Murderbear
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